This book offers sweeping and cogent arguments as to why analytic philosophers should take experimental cinema seriously as a medium for illuminating mechanisms of meaning in language. Using the analogy of the movie projector, Barnett deconstructs all communication acts into functions of interval, repetition and context. He describes how Wittgenstein’s concepts of family resemblance and language games provide a dynamic perspective on the analysis of acts of reference. He then develops a hyper-simplified formula of movement as meaning to discuss, (...) with true equivalence, the process of reference as it occurs in natural language, technical language, poetic language, painting, photography, music, and of course, cinema. Barnett then applies his analytic technique to an original perspective on cine-poetics based on Paul Valery’s concept of omnivalence, and to a projection of how this style of analysis, derived from analog cinema, can help us clarify our view of the digital mediasphere and its relation to consciousness.Informed by the philosophy of Quine, Dennett, Merleau-Ponty as well as the later work of Wittgenstein, among others, he uses the film work of Stan Brakhage, Tony Conrad, A.K. Dewdney, Nathaniel Dorsky, Ken Jacobs, Owen Land, Saul Levine, Gregory Markopoulos Michael Snow, and the poetry of Basho, John Cage, John Cayley and Paul Valery to illustrate the power of his unique perspective on meaning. (shrink)
I. Introduction Two kinds of remedies have traditionally been employed for breach of contract: legal relief and equitable relief. Legal relief normally takes the form of money damages. Equitable relief normally consists either of specific performance or an injunction – that is, the party in breach may be ordered to perform an act or to refrain from performing an act. In this article I will use a “consent theory of contract” to assess the choice between money damages and specific performance. (...) According to such a theory, contractual obligation is dependent on more fundamental entitlements of the parties and arises as a result of the parties' consent to transfer alienable rights. My thesis will be that the normal rule favoring money damages should be replaced with one that presumptively favors specific performance unless the parties have consented to money damages instead. The principal obstacle to such an approach is the reluctance of courts to specifically enforce contracts for personal services. The philosophical distinction between alienable and inalienable rights bolsters this historical reticence, since a right to personal services may be seen as inalienable. I will then explain why, if the subject matter of a contract for personal services is properly confined to an alienable right to money damages for failure to perform, specific enforcement of such contracts is no longer problematic. Finally, I shall consider whether the subject matter of contracts for corporate services is properly confined to money damages like contracts for personal services, or whether performance of corporate services can be made the subject of a valid rights transfer and judicially compelled in the same manner as contracts for external resources. (shrink)
Robert Owen was one of the most extraordinary Englishmen who ever lived and a great man. In a way his history is the history of the establishment of modern industrial Britain, reflected in the mind and activities of a very intelligent, capable and responsible industrialist, alive to the best social thought of his time. The organisation of industrial labour, factory legislation, education, trade unionism, co-operation, rationalism: he was passionately and ably engaged in all of them. His community at New (...) Lanark was the nearest thing to an industrial heaven in the Britain of dark satanic mills; he tried to found a rational co-operative community in the USA. In everything he contemplated, he saw education as a key. This selection of his writings on education illustrates his rationalist concept of the formation of character and its implications for education and society; also his growing utopian concern with social reorganisation; and third, his impact on social movements. Silver's introduction shows Owen's relationship to particular educational traditions and activities and his long-term influence on attitudes to education. (shrink)
Should we believe our controversial philosophical views? Recently, several authors have argued from broadly conciliationist premises that we should not. If they are right, we philosophers face a dilemma: If we believe our views, we are irrational. If we do not, we are not sincere in holding them. This paper offers a way out, proposing an attitude we can rationally take toward our views that can support sincerity of the appropriate sort. We should arrive at our views via a certain (...) sort of ‘insulated’ reasoning – that is, reasoning that involves setting aside certain higher-order worries, such as those provided by disagreement – when we investigate philosophical questions. (shrink)
This paper is about how to aggregate outside opinion. If two experts are on one side of an issue, while three experts are on the other side, what should a non-expert believe? Certainly, the non-expert should take into account more than just the numbers. But which other factors are relevant, and why? According to the view developed here, one important factor is whether the experts should have been expected, in advance, to reach the same conclusion. When the agreement of two (...) (or of twenty) thinkers can be predicted with certainty in advance, their shared belief is worth only as much as one of their beliefs would be worth alone. This expectational model of belief dependence can be applied whether we think in terms of credences or in terms of all-or-nothing beliefs. (shrink)
The university has lost its way. The world needs the university more than ever but for new reasons. If we are to clarify its new role in the world, we need to find a new vocabulary and a new sense of purpose. The university is faced with supercomplexity, in which our very frames of understanding, action and self-identity are all continually challenged. In such a world, the university has explicitly to take on a dual role: firstly, of compounding supercomplexity, so (...) making the world ever more challenging; and secondly, of enabling us to live effectively in this chaotic world. Internally, too, the university has to become a new kind of organization, adept at fulfilling this dual role. The university has to live by the uncertainty principle: it has to generate uncertainty, to help us live with uncertainty, and even to revel in our uncertainty. Ronald Barnett offers nothing less than a fundamental reworking of the way in which we understand the modern university. Realizing the University is essential reading for all those concerned about the future of higher education. (shrink)
There is a well-known moral quandary concerning how to account for the rightness or wrongness of acts that clearly contribute to some morally significant outcome – but which each seem too small, individually, to make any meaningful difference. One consequentialist-friendly response to this problem is to deny that there could ever be a case of this type. This paper pursues this general strategy, but in an unusual way. Existing arguments for the consequentialist-friendly position are sorites-style arguments. Such arguments imagine varying (...) a subject’s predicament bit by bit until it is clear that a relevant difference has been achieved. The arguments offered in this paper are structurally different, and do not rely on any sorites series. For this reason, they are not vulnerable to objections that have been leveled against the sorites-style arguments. (shrink)
This paper argues that research on the business case for corporate social responsibility (CSR) must account for the path dependent nature of firm-stakeholderrelations, and develops the construct of stakeholder influence capacity (SIC) to fill this void. SIC helps to explain why the effects of CSR on corporate financial performance (CFP) vary across firms and across time, therein providing a missing link in the study of the business case. This paper distinguishes CSR from related and confounded corporate resource allocations and from (...) corporate social performance (CSP), then incorporates SIC into a model that explains how acts of CSR are transformed into CFP through stakeholder relationships. This paper also develops a set of propositions to aid future research on the contingencies that produce variable financial returns to investments in CSR. (shrink)
Suppose you are on a commercial airplane that is flying at 35,000 feet. Next to you sits a man who appears to be sleeping. In fact, this man has been drugged and put upon the plane without his knowledge or consent. He has never flown on a plane before and, indeed, has no idea what an airplane is. Suddenly the man awakes and looks around him. Terrified by the alien environment in which he finds himself, he searches for a door (...) or window from which to make an escape. As luck would have it, he is seated right next to a window exit and he begins to pull the handle that will open the window. You are aware that opening the window exit at this altitude will cause the cabin to quickly depressurize and that this man, you, and probably several other passengers will be sucked out the window to your deaths. You desperately want to stop him from opening the window. Now assume that for some reason it is impossible to prevent him physically from performing the deadly act. Your only option is to rationally persuade him to leave the window exit alone. You cry out to him and, with both hands on the handles, he turns to face you and waits to hear what you have to say. What sort of argument would you make? (shrink)
What should a person do when, through no fault of her own, she ends up believing a false moral theory? Some suggest that she should act against what the false theory recommends; others argue that she should follow her rationally held moral beliefs. While the former view better accords with intuitions about cases, the latter one seems to enjoy a critical advantage: It seems better able to render moral requirements ‘followable’ or ‘action-guiding.’ But this tempting thought proves difficult to justify. (...) Indeed, whether it can be justified turns out to depend importantly on the rational status of epistemic akrasia. Furthermore, it can be argued, from premises all parties to the moral ignorance debate should accept, that rational epistemic akrasia is possible. If the argument proves successful, it follows that a person should sometimes act against her rationally held moral convictions. (shrink)
Dimensions of the ethical work climate, as conceptualized by Victor and Cullen, are potentially important influences on individual ethical decision-making in the organizational context. The present study examined the direct and indirect effects of individuals' perceptions of work climate on their ethical judgments and behavioral intentions regarding an ethical dilemma. A national sample of marketers was surveyed in a scenario-based research study. The results indicated that, although perceived climate dimensions did not have a direct effect on behavioral intentions, there were (...) significant moderating effects. Climates perceived as emphasizing social responsibility and rules/codes moderated the individual ethical judgment-behavioral intentions relationship such that individuals were less likely to say that they would engage in a questionable selling practice even when they themselves did not believe the practice to be unethical. Respondents were somewhat more likely to form intentions consistent with their judgment that the questionable practice was morally acceptable when the ethical climate was characterized by an emphasis on team/friendship. (shrink)
The present study extends the study of individuals' ethical ideology withinthe context of marketing ethics issues. A national sample of marketing professionals participated. Respondents' ethical ideologies were classified as absolutists, situationists, exceptionists, or subjectivists using the Ethical Position Questionnaire (Forsyth, 1980). Respondents then answered questions about three ethically ambiguous situations common to marketing and sales. The results indicated that marketers' ethical judgments about the situations differed based on their ethical ideology, with absolutists rating the actions as most unethical. The findings (...) are consistent with those of two earlier studies that utilized samples of business students (Barnett et al., 1994, 1995). The results suggest that personal moral philosophy is an important influence on ethical decision making that should be considered in empirical studies of business ethics. The results also support the utility of the Ethical Position Questionnaire (Forsyth, 1980) as a means for researchers and practitioners to assess individuals' ethical ideology. (shrink)
Peer reporting is a specific form of whistelblowing in which an individual discloses the wrongdoing of a peer. Previous studies have examined situational variables thought to influence a person's decision to report the wrongdoing of a peer. The present study looked at peer reporting from the individual level. Five hypotheses were developed concerning the relationships between (1) religiosity and ethical ideology, (2) ethical ideology and ethical judgments about peer reporting, and (3) ethical judgments and intentions to report peer wrongdoing.Subjects read (...) a vignette concerning academic cheating, and were asked to respond to a question-naire concerning the vignette. Data were analyzed using structural equation methodology. (shrink)
In Barnett and Block (J Bus Ethics 88(4):711–716, 2009a), the present authors claim that borrowing short and lending long is fraudulent, and thus ought to be prohibited on legal grounds. Bagus and Howden (J Bus Ethics 90(3):399, 2009) take issue with our ethical analysis. The present paper is our response to these authors; it is an attempt to defend Barnett and Block (J Bus Ethics 88(4):711–716, 2009a) against the very interesting and important, although we believe, erroneous, criticisms of (...) Bagus and Howden (J Bus Ethics 90(3):399, 2009). (shrink)
Do firms benefit from their voluntary efforts to alleviate the many problems confronting society? A vast literature establishing a “business case” for corporate social responsibility appears to find that usually they do. However, as argued herein, the business case literature has established only that firms usually benefit from responding to the demands of their primary stakeholders. The nature of the relationship between the interests of business and those of broader society, beyond a subset of powerful primary stakeholders, remains an open (...) question despite this vast literature. This article develops a set of propositions that highlight constraints on firms’ ability to profit from CSR and outlines a set of managerial challenges on which researchers must focus their attention to truly determine whether and when firms can profit by responding to the needs of society. (shrink)
Dimensions of the ethical work climate, as conceptualized by Victor and Cullen (1988), are potentially important influences on individual ethical decision-making in the organizational context. The present study examined the direct and indirect effects of individuals' perceptions of work climate on their ethical judgments and behavioral intentions regarding an ethical dilemma. A national sample of marketers was surveyed in a scenario-based research study. The results indicated that, although perceived climate dimensions did not have a direct effect on behavioral intentions, there (...) were significant moderating effects. Climates perceived as emphasizing social responsibility and rules/codes moderated the individual ethical judgment-behavioral intentions relationship such that individuals were less likely to say that they would engage in a questionable selling practice even when they themselves did not believe the practice to be unethical. Respondents were somewhat more likely to form intentions consistent with their judgment that the questionable practice was morally acceptable when the ethical climate was characterized by an emphasis on team/friendship. (shrink)
Differences in ethical ideology are thought to influence individuals'' reasoning about moral issues (Forsyth and Nye, 1990; Forsyth, 1992). To date, relatively little research has addressed this proposition in terms of business-related ethical issues. In the present study, four groups, representing four distinct ethical ideologies, were created based on the two dimensions of the Ethical Position Questionnaire (idealism and relativism), as posited by Forsyth (1980). The ethical judgments of individuals regarding several business-related issues varied, depending upon their ethical ideology.
A natural view of testimony holds that a source's statements provide one with evidence about what the source believes, which in turn provides one with evidence about what is true. But some theorists have gone further and developed a broadly analogous view of memory. According to this view, which this essay calls the “diary model,” one's memory ordinarily serves as a means for one's present self to gain evidence about one's past judgments, and in turn about the truth. This essay (...) rejects the diary model's analogy between memory and testimony from one's former self, arguing first that memory and a diary differ with respect to their psychological roles, and second that this psychological difference underwrites important downstream epistemic differences. The resulting view stands opposed to prominent discussions of memory and testimony, which either, like the diary model, treat memory by analogy to what we naively wish to say about testimony, or which instead attempt to extend to testimony the epistemically preservative role of memory. (shrink)
In Barnett and Block :711–716, 2009a), the present authors claim that borrowing short and lending long is fraudulent, and thus ought to be prohibited on legal grounds. Bagus and Howden :399, 2009) take issue with our ethical analysis. The present paper is our response to these authors; it is an attempt to defend Barnett and Block :711–716, 2009a) against the very interesting and important, although we believe, erroneous, criticisms of Bagus and Howden :399, 2009).
If consciousness is "the hard problem" in mind science -- explaining how the amazing private world of consciousness emerges from neuronal activity -- then "the really hard problem," writes Owen Flanagan in this provocative book, is explaining how meaning is possible in the material world. How can we make sense of the magic and mystery of life naturalistically, without an appeal to the supernatural? How do we say truthful and enchanting things about being human if we accept the fact (...) that we are finite material beings living in a material world, or, in Flanagan's description, short-lived pieces of organized cells and tissue? Flanagan's answer is both naturalistic and enchanting. We all wish to live in a meaningful way, to live a life that really matters, to flourish, to achieve _eudaimonia_ -- to be a "happy spirit." Flanagan calls his "empirical-normative" inquiry into the nature, causes, and conditions of human flourishing _eudaimonics_. _Eudaimonics_, systematic philosophical investigation that is continuous with science, is the naturalist's response to those who say that science has robbed the world of the meaning that fantastical, wishful stories once provided. Flanagan draws on philosophy, neuroscience, evolutionary biology, and psychology, as well as on transformative mindfulness and self-cultivation practices that come from such nontheistic spiritual traditions as Buddhism, Confucianism, Aristotelianism, and Stoicism, in his quest. He gathers from these disciplines knowledge that will help us understand the nature, causes, and constituents of well-being and advance human flourishing. _Eudaimonics_ can help us find out how to make a difference, how to contribute to the accumulation of good effects -- how to live a meaningful life. (shrink)
Employees perception of the existence of a covenantal relationship between themselves and their employer indicates that they believe there is a mutual commitment to shared values and the welfare of the other party in the relationship. Research suggests that these types of employment relationships have positive benefits for both employees and employers. There has been little research, however, on the factors that determine whether such relationships will develop and thrive.In this paper, we suggest that the organizations ethical work climate may (...) be an important factor affecting employees perceptions about the nature of the relational contract between themselves and their employer. Specifically, we argue that work climates emphasizing benevolence and principle will be associated with covenantal relationships. Conversely, we believe that work climates emphasizing egoism will make it less likely that covenantal relationships will develop between an employer and employee. (shrink)
A study of 513 executives researched decisions involving ethics, relationships and results. Analyzing personal values, organization role and level, career stage, gender and sex role with decisions in ten scenarios produced conclusions about both the role of gender, subjective values, and the other study variables and about situational relativity, gender stereotypes, career stages, and future research opportunities.
According to a traditional Cartesian epistemology of perception, perception does not provide one with direct knowledge of the external world. Instead, your immediate perceptual evidence is limited to facts about your own visual experience, from which conclusions about the external world must be inferred. Cartesianism faces well-known skeptical challenges. But this chapter argues that any anti-Cartesian view strong enough to avoid these challenges must license a way of updating one’s beliefs in response to anticipated experiences that seems diachronically irrational. To (...) avoid this result, the anti-Cartesian must either license an unacceptable epistemic chauvinism, or else claim that merely reflecting on one’s experiences defeats perceptual justification. This leaves us with a puzzle: Although Cartesianism faces problems, avoiding them brings a new set of problems. (shrink)
A common view among nontheists combines the de jure objection that theism is epistemically unacceptable with agnosticism about the de facto objection that theism is false. Following Plantinga, we can call this a “proper” de jure objection—a de jure objection that does not depend on any de facto objection. In his Warranted Christian Belief, Plantinga has produced a general argument against all proper de jure objections. Here I first show that this argument is logically fallacious (it makes subtle probabilistic fallacies (...) disguised by scope ambiguities), and proceed to lay the groundwork for the construction of actual proper de jure objections. (shrink)
Conciliationism faces a challenge that has not been satisfactorily addressed. There are clear cases of epistemically significant merely possible disagreement, but there are also clear cases where merely possible disagreement is epistemically irrelevant. Conciliationists have not yet accounted for this asymmetry. In this paper, we propose that the asymmetry can be explained by positing a selection constraint on all cases of peer disagreement—whether actual or merely possible. If a peer’s opinion was not selected in accordance with the proposed constraint, then (...) it lacks epistemic significance. This allows us to distinguish the epistemically significant cases of merely possible disagreement from the insignificant ones. (shrink)
A conditional takes the form ‘If A, then C’. On the truth-conditional view of conditionals, conditional statements state things with truth-conditions. On the suppositional view, conditional statements involve the expression of a supposition. I develop and defend a view on which conditional statements both state things with truth-conditions and express suppositions. On this view, something is fundamentally right about standard truth-conditional and standard suppositional views. Considerations in favor of conditional contents lead us to attribute truth-conditional contents to conditional statements; considerations (...) in favor of the suppositional view then lead us to an unexpected account of these contents. The resulting view has a number of benefits, including a unified treatment of conditional speech acts, a plausible account of our practice of ascribing truth-values to conditional statements, a simple explanation of the apparent equivalence between probabilities of conditionals and conditional probabilities, an intuitive treatment of ‘Gibbardian stand-offs’, a plausible logic of conditionals, and an explanation of why theorizing about conditionals has proved so difficult. (shrink)
Milk, sand, plastic, uranium, wood, carbon, and oil are kinds of stuff. The sand in Hawaii, the uranium in North Korea, and the oil in Iraq are portions of stuff. Not everyone believes in portions of stuff.1 Those who do are likely to agree that, whatever their more specific natures, portions of stuff can at least be identified with mereological sums of their subportions.2 It seems after all trivial that a given portion of stuff just is all of its subportions (...) combined—not by a spatiotemporal or any other substantive unifying relation, but by a mere principle of summation, a principle requiring that, if some things exist, there exists the sum, or collection, of those things. (shrink)
Interest in subjective values and decision responses are investigated empirically, including statistically testing the predictive relationships between subjective values, other independent variables such as level and area of executive responsibility, and decision responses.
This paper critically examines currently influential transparency accounts of our knowledge of our own beliefs that say that self-ascriptions of belief typically are arrived at by “looking outward” onto the world. For example, one version of the transparency account says that one self-ascribes beliefs via an inference from a premise to the conclusion that one believes that premise. This rule of inference reliably yields accurate self-ascriptions because you cannot infer a conclusion from a premise without believing the premise, and so (...) you cannot infer from a premise that you believe the premise unless you do believe it. I argue that this procedure cannot be a source of justification, however, because one can be justified in inferring from p that q only if p amounts to strong evidence that q is true. This is incompatible with the transparency account because p often is not very strong evidence that you believe that p. For example, unless you are a weather expert, the fact that it will rain is not very strong evidence that you believe it will rain. After showing how this intuitive problem can be made precise, I conclude with a broader lesson about the nature of inferential justification: that beliefs, when justified, must be underwritten by beliefs, when justified, must be underwritten by evidential relationships between the facts or propositions which those beliefs represent. (shrink)
If the reliability of a source of testimony is open to question, it seems epistemically illegitimate to verify the source’s reliability by appealing to that source’s own testimony. Is this because it is illegitimate to trust a questionable source’s testimony on any matter whatsoever? Or is there a distinctive problem with appealing to the source’s testimony on the matter of that source’s own reliability? After distinguishing between two kinds of epistemically illegitimate circularity—bootstrapping and self-verification—I argue for a qualified version of (...) the claim that there is nothing especially illegitimate about using a questionable source to evaluate its own reliability. Instead, it is illegitimate to appeal to a questionable source’s testimony on any matter whatsoever, with the matter of the source’s own reliability serving only as a special case. (shrink)
Whistleblowers have usually been treated as outcasts by private-sector employers. But legal, ethical, and practical considerations increasingly compel companies to encourage employees to disclose suspected illegal and/or unethical activities throughinternal communication channels. Internal disclosure policies/procedures (IDPP''s) have been recommended as one way to encourage such communication.This study examined the relationship between IDPP''s and employee whistleblowing among private-sector employers. Almost 300 human resources executives provided data concerning their organizations'' experiences.
On the dominant view of vagueness, if it is vague whether Harry is bald, then it is unsettled, not merely epistemically, but metaphysically, whether Harry is bald. In other words, vagueness is a type of indeterminacy. On the standard alternative, vagueness is a type of ignorance: if it is vague whether Harry is bald, then, even though it is metaphysically settled whether Harry is bald, we cannot know whether Harry is bald. On my view, vagueness is neither a type of (...) indeterminacy nor a type of ignorance. Rather, it is sui generis. (shrink)
Roger White (2015) sketches an ingenious new solution to the problem of induction. He argues from the principle of indifference for the conclusion that the world is more likely to be induction- friendly than induction-unfriendly. But there is reason to be skeptical about the proposed indifference-based vindication of induction. It can be shown that, in the crucial test cases White concentrates on, the assumption of indifference renders induction no more accurate than random guessing. After discussing this result, the paper explains (...) why the indifference-based argument seemed so compelling, despite ultimately being unsound. (shrink)
This book explores Hume's account of reason and its role in human understanding, seen in the context of other notable accounts by philosophers of the early modern period. David Owen offers new interpretations of many of Hume's most famous arguments about induction, belief, scepticism, the passions, and moral distinctions.
Whistleblowing by employees to regulatory agencies and other parties external to the organization can have serious consequences both for the whistleblower and the company involved. Research has largely focused on individual and group variables that affect individuals'' decision to blow the whistle on perceived wrongdoing.This study examined the relationship between selected organizational characteristics and the perceived level of external whistleblowing by employees in 240 organizations. Data collected in a nationwide survey of human resource executives were analyzed using analysis of variance.
I argue that, unlike your brain, you are not composed of other things: you are simple. My argument centers on what I take to be an uncontroversial datum: for any pair of conscious beings, it is impossible for the pair itself to be conscious. Consider, for instance, the pair comprising you and me. You might pinch your arm and feel a pain. I might simultaneously pinch my arm and feel a qualitatively identical pain. But the pair we form would not (...) feel a thing.1 Pairs of people themselves are incapable of experience. Call this The Datum. What explains The Datum? I think the following exhaust the reasonable options. (1) Pairs of people lack a sufficient number of immediate parts. (2) Pairs of people lack immediate parts capable of standing in the right sorts of relations to each other and their environment. (3) Pairs of people lack immediate parts of the right nature. (4) Pairs of people are not structures (they are unstructured collections of their two immediate parts). (5) Some combination of (1) – (4). Finally, (6) pairs of people are not simple. (shrink)
On some accounts of vagueness, predicates like “is a heap” are tolerant. That is, their correct application tolerates sufficiently small changes in the objects to which they are applied. Of course, such views face the sorites paradox, and various solutions have been proposed. One proposed solution involves banning repeated appeals to tolerance, while affirming tolerance in any individual case. In effect, this solution rejects the reasoning of the sorites argument. This paper discusses a thorny problem afflicting this approach to vagueness. (...) In particular, it is shown that, on the foregoing view, whether an object is a heap will sometimes depend on factors extrinsic to that object, such as whether its components came from other heaps. More generally, the paper raises the issue of how to count heaps in a tolerance-friendly framework. (shrink)
We stipulate, arguendo, that fractional-reserve-demand deposit banking is per se fraudulent. We ask whether or not time deposit banking can also be illicit, and answer in the positive, if there is a mismatch between the time dimensions of deposits and loans. To wit, if an intermediary borrows short and lends long.